Pattern: Baby Sweater on Two Needles (February) from Elizabeth Zimmermann’s Knitter’s Almanac
Yarn: KnitPicks Hawthorne Kettle Dye in “turkish delight”
Needle: 3.5 mm (US-4) circular
I started this sweater in February, on my way to Las Vegas. I worked on it a few times while I was there–in the mornings with coffee, or when my husband had to work–and nearly finished the yoke by the time I left. I finished the body at home and immediately started the sleeves, because I am prone to putting projects aside, halfway finished, and never ever picking them back up again. So, two sleeves were done in two days and then…it sat. March rolled around and I finally got around to blocking this baby and sewing in the most perfect little vintage buttons. I’m pretty pleased with how it turned out.
Do you have any Spring projects on your needles? Let me have a look!
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I’m taking a break from packing my husband and son up for a camping trip to blog about this amazing hat.
My grandpa turns 80 the day before Easter, so my aunt is throwing him a party the week before. That means tomorrow! Unfortunately, we have a camping trip with our cub scout pack planned for the same weekend, so half my little family will be missing it. I’d be disowned if I did, so despite the weather being BEAUTIFUL and my body practically ACHING to get out more, I’m a little happy to get to spend some time with my extended family.
I spent about 3 hours, last night, baking at least 13 dozen pan de polvo and I still have a chunk of dough in my fridge. It’s a recipe he gave me himself, so I felt like it was a nice tribute. I made the cookies for the whole party, so it’s only fitting to have something just for him, right?
Enter Morgan by Anne Kuo Lukito, from the Fall 2008 Knitty. A few weeks ago, my grandpa was wearing a flat cap and my husband said he looked “really cool” in it, so I thought this would be a great present! Did I mention I didn’t think of this until last Sunday? Yeeeeahhh!
I immediately went into panic mode. What yarn will I use?! What color?! What size?! Since it was Sunday, the yarn shop where I could get the actual yarn this pattern calls for was closed. AND it would be closed on Monday, too! MORE PANIC!
What’s a girl to do?! I took a trip to Jo-Ann. I had browsed the completed projects on Ravelry for at least an hour, looking at alternative yarns and saw Lion Brand’s Wool-Ease mentioned a few times. I liked that it’d be an easy-care yarn, so I checked out the colors at the store and brought home a ball of their “blue heather.”
I’m gonna be honest, guys: I didn’t swatch. I KNOW. It could break my project if my gauge were off! I had no time to spare, so I SHOULD have swatched, but I’m lucky I didn’t because I might have ran out of yarn. I used almost the entire ball!
I am SO happy with this. The hat is made in ONE PIECE. ONE. You start at the center of the top and make some intense increases to form a circle. I say intense because they’re spaced differently every single round, so you can’t see any increase lines. Genius! Once the circle is big enough, you start working short rows to turn the circle into more of an oval. After that is a ridge row, then more short rows, then you cut the yarn, pick it up somewhere else, and work more short rows, say a prayer, throw some fairy dust, work more short rows, ribbing, binding off, sewing, blocking, more sewing, and one last block, a final wave of your wand, and oh yeah, a few more sewing stitches. IT’S A HAT AND IT’s FUCKING BEAUTIFUL.
I started Sunday afternoon, at my mother in law’s house. I worked it on the way home, then put my kids to bed, knit for 4 hours straight while watching a Bates Motel marathon, fell asleep TOO late, woke up 6 hours later, got my kids ready for school, sent them off, knit the whole day. I was done that evening and then the epic finishing began. It was actually FUN, guys. I wholeheartedly recommend the pattern.
Pattern: Morgan by Anne Kuo Lukito, from the Fall 2008 Knitty
Yarn: one ball of Lion Brand Wool-Ease in “blue heather”
Needle: one 4mm (US 6) 40″ circular. I used the magic loop method. It wasn’t too difficult to adapt from the two-circulars pattern.
Have you ever gone crazy for a project that you felt you HAD to complete RIGHT AWAY? I really wanted to make sure this got done and looked great, so I did things real quick. I’m lucky I didn’t encounter (many) snags. I did have to re-stitch the bottom hem, but it looked ridic and now it’s perfect, so it was worth it! Tell me about your epic knitting/crochet marathons.
Last month, the fine folks at Cleckheaton sent over one of their beanie kits for review. After reading their story, I was pretty curious just how soft the yarn would be. It comes from specially selected sheep and is milled right there in Victoria. Australia’s finest is right here in south Texas! I wondered if THIS would finally be the wool my kids would not complain about.
This photo is straight from my Instagram. I got so excited after it came that I took the photo and cast on immediately, without taking out my camera for a proper photo. The kit has two balls of Australian Superfine Merino and a two-colour beanie pattern, which you can find for free here, along with a good assortment of other patterns. Those baby sweaters are making me swoon! My cousins and sisters are refusing to procreate for me! I just want a baby to knit for, take photos of, cuddle, and send back. Is that too much to ask?*
Anyway…the colors are gorgeous! This gray is called “iceberg” and it is the perfect name. Icy cold with subtle hints of blue when you look at it a certain way. The orange is simply called “burnt orange” and it the warmest compliment to the gray. It’s a deep, rich pumpkin color and makes me miss fall.
So, what was the verdict? VERRRRY SOFT! We like. I don’t think he even knows it’s wool. I generally shove beanies on my kids’ heads and if they complain, I tell them to just deal with it until we get inside or get to the car. My youngest is the loudest complainer, but this guy tends to be more prone to allergy-like reactions. He’s mildly allergic to cats (proven with an allergy test), so most animal fibers are just meh to him. He doesn’t break out or have trouble breathing, thank God, but wool sweaters and hats aren’t his favorites. He liked this one, though! It’s got a good slouch and the pom pom is awesome.
The yarn definitely feels more silky smooth than other wools. It hasn’t shed or pilled at all in the past week or so that we’ve had it in rotation. The pattern was great, though I adjusted it to work in the round. I could not see myself working that much stockinette stitch flat! Luckily, it was easy to adapt the crown decreases and whatnot. I had a good time mindless knitting that stockinette in the round. The kit comes in an itty bitty project bag that was great to tote the beanie-in-progress around. I knit in a taqueria!
I can really see myself using this yarn for other projects. There are so many colors to choose from! I want to get my hands on some of that mustard ASAP. Yellow is the color of my Spring and my heart is begging for a yellow lacey cardigan.
*My oldest turns TEN (10!) in exactly 3 months. I think he looks so grown up in that last photo! This has turned on something in my brain that makes me absolutely gooey over babies. Yes, I have the fever. The baby fever! If you have a baby and you see me, just let me carry them, ok? I’ll smooch their wittle face and hand them right back. Or I’ll put them in my knitting bag and take them home. I’m not 100% certain which flavor of baby-crazy I am, this week.
Click here if you want to try one of their Knit-it-Yourself beanie kits!
Happy Saturday, folks! For the first time in several weeks–probably since before Christmas–I have NO commitments, today. It’s so exciting to be doing nothing, so I’m here blogging. I really wanted to tell you guys about this sweet sweet kit Wool and the Gang sent me to review.
They contacted me to knit something for my Valentine. I checked out their selection of Men’s Accessories and chose the Mr. Tosh beanie and the “Shacklewell Grey” colorway. I knew the gray would be what my husband preferred. Tip: know your love’s accessory preference!
The kit came with all the amazing things you see above: yarn, pattern booklet (it contains tips for things like casting on and seaming!), knitting AND finishing needles, and a nice #shareyourknits sticker.
The Sheepaca yarn is 50% alpaca and 50% merino wool, so it is crazy soft! I kind of wished I were knitting a cowl, but my husband doesn’t wear cowls. I’ll probably offer to
cuddle carry his hat when we go out. You can snag some Sheepaca alone, too. Check out the colors available here.
The pattern calls for straight knitting. I was a little hesitant to cast on the straight needles, but I really wanted to try out the rosewood needles. I am SO glad I did! These are so unlike the aluminum or bamboo needles I learned to knit on (and had such a hard time with!). They’re hefty, but not too heavy. The wood is smooth and my stitches glided effortlessly. It was a treat to knit with them. I didn’t once wish I had cast on a circular needle. Seaming at the end wasn’t bad, either! It’s always nice to freshen up a skill you hardly use and I was actually quite proud of my seam (see below)!
The pattern itself was very easy to follow. The booklet was helpful and I think new knitters would really like it. There are instructions for casting on (they suggest longtail, my favorite!), beginning, the stitch pattern, finishing, seaming, etc. It’s detailed, but not overwhelming.
My seam is directly to the right of the heart in the last photo. You can hardly see it! I was so proud. Tip: try out your old skills on something new, every once in a while!
The hat fit great. It matches my husband’s black jacket well and he got to wear it when the temps dropped (again), last week. Yes, I gave it to him early for the sake of the blog. Plus, he’s leaving to Vegas on the 15th, so I wanted to SEE him wear it a bit.
I’m pretty much in love with Wool and the Gang, now. The sweaters, the cowl, the purses…ah! Why don’t you knit something for your sweetie, this Valentine’s Day?
Disclaimer: Wool and the Gang sent me the knitting kit to review. No other compensation was provided. All opinions are my own.
A Good Yarn is a sweet fiber arts store in Sarasota, Florida. Last year, they launched an easy-to-use online shop, where you can browse all of their products, from yarns to notions, kits, and my favorite…exclusive colorways!
When I was contacted to review one of the exclusive colorways, I was pretty thrilled. I chose the “Butterfly” colorway, which is one from their Purl Diver Collection. It is inspired by a beautiful photo of a Pyramid Butterfly Fish that was taken in the Soloman Islands. The gold, grays, and black were striking and caught my eye immediately.
The base yarn is Lorna’s Laces Sportmate. A very squishy sport-weight yarn made of 70% merino and 30% viscose.
Unfortunately, I received this right before that extremely busy time of year that holds holidays, sickness, and more holidays, so it stayed untouched for a while. After most of that excitement of November and December died down, I wound the skein into a ball and went on a Ravelry hunt for the perfect pattern.
I wanted a pattern that would showcase color above all else. I loved the way all the colors looked together! I found the Downtown Cowl and cast on December 30. [US 6 29″ circular needle]
I needed a project for to knit while I sat in a waiting room at the hospital. December 31, my mom had to have a stent placed in her carotid artery, so I anxiously knit the time away. I needed something to keep my mind off what was going on behind closed doors; something to control when I felt so out of control. This was perfect.
Obviously, it knit up beautifully! The colors all mixed into each other in the best possible ways. The length is perfect for wrapping twice around my neck, or three times if it’s a particularly chilly day. The yarn was dyed spectacularly, too. There was hardly any runoff when I rinsed it before blocking. By the way, how in the world do YOU block circle scarves? This one was hard! Thank goodness lace is so forgiving.
The color perfectly coordinates with my gray coat. The golds and white really pop against the black/gray. Check out A Good Yarn and give these beautiful colorways a try!